Kathua rape: SC seeks J&K's response on transfer of trial

Esequiel Farfan
Abril 17, 2018

The court also issued notice to the state on a petition filed by the victim's father that says the atmosphere in Jammu is highly polarised for a fair trial and the accused must be tried in Chandigarh.

The trial court will hear the matter on April 28.

In January, a group of men, including cops, kidnapped an eight-year-old child of the nomadic Bakarwal community in Kathua.

Dipika Singh Rajawat had approached the top court seeking transfer of the hearing of the case from J&K to Chandigarh on Monday citing threats to her life.

The bench also directed the state police to provide adequate security to the juvenile delinquent, who has been picked up in relation to the case at the observation home under the law.

The apex court had said that it is a settled law that a lawyer who appears for a victim or accused can not be prevented by any bar association or group of lawyers, for it is his duty to appear in support of his client. He also sought safety and security from the court in his plea.

Meanwhile, trials of the accused in the horrific case began at Kathua court today.

Kapur has also sought transfer of probe to the CBI, besides seeking exemplary compensation to the family of the victim of the case.

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At the outset, Jaising, who mentioned the matter for an urgent hearing in the forenoon, said the "biological father" of the victim had no grievance with regard to the police probe.

All pleaded not guilty and their counsel said that they were ready to undergo narco-tests.

Senior Superintendent of Police, Crime Branch, Ramesh Kumar Jalla told The Hindu that the police did not plan to subject the accused to narco tests as of now.

The judge asked the accused whether they had been given copies of the chargesheet, which runs into 400 pages, added A K Sawahney, who is representing head constable Tilak Raj.

Sanji Ram, the caretaker of the "devisthan" in a village in Kathua, about 90 km from Jammu, is listed as the main conspirator behind the crime.

According to the Crime Branch investigation, the girl was confined in a temple, sedated and raped thrice before being suffocated and bludgeoned to death.

On January 17, the body of a minor girl was found in the forests near Rasana, Hiranagar. She was drugged and raped repeatedly before being murdered.

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